Back door gun registry?

The plight of Red's Trading Post (under relentless assault from the BATFE, despite being "guilty" of nothing worse than occasional, trivial clerical errors), and many other gun dealers suffering the same fate (but few fighting back as courageously) may mean more to gun owners than simply the inconvenience of finding a gun shop nearby when so many are being forced to close. It certainly should mean something to any gun owner who believes that "registration leads to confiscation" (which has proved true far too often to be ignored).

As Ryan Horsley (who managaes Red's, and whose family opened it more than seventy years ago), points out, nearly 80% of the FFL holders in this country were closed in the period from 1994 to 2005.

What does that have to do with gun registration? The BATFE Form 4473 that must be filled out for every gun purchase from a licensed dealer must be kept on file (for twenty years) by the dealer. The dealer must also record all the information from every Form 4473 in his "bound book." This book must be kept for the entire time the dealer is in business (in other words, there is no twenty-year "shelf life" for this information). No government agency may keep the 4473's, or even copies of them–this is what is intended to protect gun owners from a gun registry (the BATFE can of course inspect the forms as part of an investigation, but cannot demand them en masse).

However, once a dealer closes, for any reason, he must surrender his "bound book" to the BATFE, giving them the records of every sale made by that dealer. That, obviously, is just the information that prohibition against a gun registry was intended to keep out of the government's grasping claws.

So, from 1994 to 2005, that's almost 200,000 bound books, and untold millions of transactions, that the BATFE stormtroopers have gotten their hands on. That in itself might be much of the motivation behind the BATFE's jihad against gun dealers.

Still think it's not really your problem when the BATFE goes after a gun shop?